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Jack Morris

Jack Morris

Position(s):
P, DH
Born:
May 16, 1955
Bats:
Right
Throws:
Right
Height:
6' 3"
Weight:
195 lbs
Major League Debut:
7-26-1977 with DET
Allstar Selections:
1981 TSN, 1984 BR, 1991 BR, 1991 WsMVP

Intro

Jack Morris won far more games (233) than any other pitcher in baseball over a 14-year span (1979-1992), only twice spent time on the disabled list, and amassed an amazing string of more than 500 straight starts without missing a turn in the rotation. His pitching performance in Game Seven for the Minnesota Twins in the 1991 World Series is one of the greatest in post-season annals. Critics have attacked Morris' legacy due to his high ERA, claiming he won due to great run support. Those same critics ignore the fact that Morris pitched much of his career in a tremendous hitters' ballpark (Tiger Stadium). Morris was the winningest pitcher of the 1980s, and the ace of three World Championship teams.

Unform Number

#47 (1977-1994)

Quotes About

"You have to wonder if enough of these voters will ever be able to look past his 3.90 career ERA to get him to the podium. Well, if you toss out that ERA (which is lower than Jason Schmidt's career ERA, by the way), what more evidence of this man's perpetual ace-hood could a voter ask for? This is about more than just Game 7, 1991. Jack Morris pitched a no-hitter. He started three All-Star Games. He was a huge figure on three World Series pitching staffs. He always started Opening Day. And consider this: From 1979 to '92, when Morris and Nolan Ryan were both doing their thing, Morris had 65 more wins than Ryan (233-168). I've voted for him eight years in a row, and never once felt I'd overinflated what he was in his day." — writer Jayson Stark, 2007

Quotes From

"The only time I talk to a woman when I'm naked is when she's on top of me or I'm on top of her." — Jack Morris, to female reporter Jennifer Frey in 1990 when she approached him in the Tiger clubhouse

Replaced By

Orel Hershiser took over as the Indians' veteran righty in 1995, after Morris had retired.

Best Season

Morris had a lot of similar seasons. In 1986 he paced the loop in shutouts and struck out 223 batters. He had several other seasons that were comparable.

Facts

Jack Morris made a major league-record 13 straight opening day starts, from 1980 through 1992.

 

Feats

On April 7, 1984, Morris threw a no-hitter at Comiskey Park against the White Sox, tying Bob Feller for the earliest no-hitter in history. Morris loaded the bases twice in the game, but got out of the jams with strikeouts. He whiffed Ron Kittle for the final out. Lance Parrish was his catcher... Morris had 25 games in his career in which he struck out at least 10 batters, with a high of 12 (three times).

Description

Morris was tall, but not towering, athletiic, but not muscle-bound. He had almost the perfect pitcher's body. He was clean-shaven when he first came up, because that was Sparky's policy, but soon he grew his bushy, brown, almost red mustache. When he retired he was almost the exact same weight as when he first debuted. He kept himself in marvelous shape. As a consequence, he was an excellent fielding pitcher, though he never won a Gold Glove, which was an oversight.

Cantankerous Jack

Morris often alienated media and teammates during his career. He twice went on media-strikes in which he refused to talk to sportswriters. In 1994, while with the Indians, Morris insisted on going back to his ranch between starts rather than travel with the team. During the 1984 season, as the Tigers roared to the World Series title, Morris bickered with the media, stormed out of the locker room, and irritated his teammates and manager Sparky Anderson with his childish antics.

MLB Leaders, 1979-1992

Wins

Jack Morris... 233

Bob Welch... 192

Dave Stieb... 174

Nolan Ryan... 168

Complete Games

Jack Morris... 169

Fernando Valenzuela... 107

Charlie Hough... 106

Dave Stieb... 103

ERA (2,200 IP min.)

Nolan Ryan... 3.21

Bob Welch... 3.32

Fernando Valenzuela... 3.34

Dave Stieb... 3.39

Dennis Martinez... 3.61

Jack Morris... (8th) 3.71

 

Morris started 490 consecutive games without missing a turn in the rotation.

Nine Other Players Who Debuted in 1977
Eddie Murray
Lou Whitaker
Alan Trammell
Jack Morris
Lance Parrish
Dale Berra
Bump Wills
Rick Honeycutt
Willie Hernandez

A few in the Detroit media called him "Mt. Morris" because of his hot temper.


The Pitches He Threw

Fastball, slider, split-finger fastball, changeup (though he rarely used it). According to Morris, he had three fastballs: a two-seamer, a four-seamer, and one he gripped with four fingers and pushed with his thumb so it actually got some backspin.

Post-Season Notes
Morris's record in the post-season: 6-1 with a 3.80 ERA in 13 starts; 3-0 in the World Series with 40 K's in 51 2/3 innings.

Awards and Honors
1991 ML WS MVP

 

Awards and highlights

    * 1981 - The Sporting News Pitcher of the Year
    * 1984 - Babe Ruth Award
    * 1991 - Babe Ruth Award
    * 1991 - World Series Most Valuable Player
    * All Star: 1981, 1984, 1985, 1987, 1991
    * AL Wins Leader: 1981, 1992
    * AL Strikeouts Leader: 1983
    * AL Shutouts Leader: 1986
    * Hold the major league record for consecutive opening day starts, with 14 (1980–1993)
    * Ranks No. 8 on the all time MLB list for wild pitches with 206 [2]
    * Ranks No. 1 in Detroit Tigers history for wild pitches (155) and balks (23).
    * Holds Tigers' all-time record for most times leading the team in wins - 11 (1979–88, 1990).

 

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Tagged:
1984 World Series, 1991 World Series, Detroit Tigers, Jack Morris, Lou Whitaker, Minnesota Twins, No-hitter, Sparky Anderson, Toronto Blue Jays

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